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Building an AMD for future upgrade

Last response: in Motherboards
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May 24, 2011 11:33:10 PM

I'm going to build a new system with an eye to future upgradeability. That means starting with a good case, power supply and motherboard.

I see that I can purchase a motherboard that supports only Phenom II or one that supports Phenom II / Athlon II / Sempron 100. I'm guessing that a Phenom II only motherboard is doing something with L3 cache that is incompatible with Athlon II, but I can't find any information on this.

What's the difference between a motherboard that supports only Phenom II and one that supports Athlon II and Phenom II?

Would this difference cause a Phenom II CPU to run any better on a Phenom II only motherboard?
May 25, 2011 12:03:13 AM

There are no motherboards that ONLY support Phenom II CPUs. Any motherboard that supports Phenom IIs will also support Athlon IIs.
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May 25, 2011 1:24:44 AM

That is true.Athlon's are also socket AM3 which supports both Athlon ii's and Phenom ii's.

The only difference bettween the Athlon ii's and the Phenom ii's is the L3 catche.Their are no such things as Phenom ii only boards.Phenom ii's use the same socket as Athlon ii's which is AM3.

Your best bet is to wait until July or end of June when AMD's new line of processor's will be on the market.

It doesn't really seem like it's a good idea to build off of the AM3 socket right now because the new socket,AM3+,is only 2 months from hitting shevles.If your planning on building it now their are a few AM3+ mobo's on the market right now but what processor's they support from AM3+ are unknown still,it's likely that after a BIOS update the mobo's will be able to use some AM3+ processor's but not all of them.It's also a good idea to wait because if your budget is tight then i'm sure the prices will drop for the current AMD processor's making it more achievable to get a good processor at a cheap price.
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May 29, 2011 3:06:39 AM

It does make sense that any board which supports Phenom II would also Support Athlon II, but look at this:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=E...

Of course, the info may be bad. I haven't gone to the manufacturer's sites to see if the boards really don't support anything but Phenom II.

I do take the point of waiting a month.

I'm also dubious about AM3+ socket motherboards available before the CPU's. Doesn't ever seem to work out quite right.

Thanks for the replies.
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May 29, 2011 2:06:26 PM

That Foxconn mobo is total garbage.Don't get it.
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May 30, 2011 10:13:49 PM

purple stank said:
That Foxconn mobo is total garbage.Don't get it.
I'm thinking ASUS, Gigabyte, MSI, Biostar in that order. Any other brands to consider? I've got a 7 year old Elite Group, but I think I got lucky. I've used Tyan to good success, but haven't seen those around much anymore.

I'm finding a few ASUS and a number of MSI mobo's that fit my requirements. Any other suggestions? I'm unfamiliar with Zotac and Giada and I've heard that Asrock and Jetway aren't great.

The only thing I know for sure at the moment is that the board will be AM3, DDR3, with on-board HDMI, and probably a microATX.
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May 30, 2011 10:22:50 PM

Go with Asus or MSI.Those 2 companies produce the most high quality units.Biostar and Asrock are on the lower end.

What is your budget for the mobo?And it has to have HDMI and be micro?Why micro?
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May 31, 2011 6:14:02 AM

purple stank said:
Go with Asus or MSI.Those 2 companies produce the most high quality units.Biostar and Asrock are on the lower end.

What is your budget for the mobo?And it has to have HDMI and be micro?Why micro?
Take a look at my post in the New Build forum: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/312242-31-balancing-c...
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